Care for Claire Bear: group raises more than $5,000 for local toddler battling cancer

Andrew Cryer


CULLMAN – Family, friends and local residents gathered this weekend to raise funds for a local 23-month-old girl who has captured the heart of the community. Money raised at the event will go toward expenses for medical treatment and travel for Claire “Bear” Byars and her parents, Jeff and Heather Byars.

Claire is a 23-month-old from Cullman who is battling cancer at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. The funds raised will go a long way in helping pay for medical treatment and her mother’s constant travel to Philadelphia to visit on her off days. The group hoped to meet their goal $5,000, which they did by the end of the event.

Said family friend and event organizer Amber Spradlin on Facebook shortly after, “It's been a great day! We appreciate everything everyone has donated and your support during this event!! It has been a blessing to us and I know it will be a blessing to Jeff Byars, Heather Brackman Byars and Claire! Thank you all from the bottom of my heart!!”

Family friends Spradlin, of Fairview, Shea White, of Jones Chapel, and Stacey Quinn, of Hayden, organized the fundraiser this weekend. The group of friends hosted a walk for Claire, along with games, bouncy castles and buttons that were used to attract people at Heritage Park and to raise funds online.  

Those who would like to donate to Claire and her family can stop by any Regions Bank location and donate to the account “Stacy Quinn FBO Claire Bear.”

According to Quinn, “Claire’s outlook is getting better, but things are taken day-by-day and they are looking forward to long-term care.”

Jeff and Heather Byars were with Claire in Philadelphia this weekend, but they followed the event online, giving an update on Claire and thanking all of those who came out to support their daughter.

“Thank you isn't enough. You all are amazing!” said dad Jeff Byars.

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